A MelanieM Review: The Line by Angel Martinez

Standard

Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5:

The Line coverRafael Schiller, vampire and sexual god without peer, believes himself the top of the food chain, until a bizarre creature feeding in an alley scares the deathless hell out of him.

Rafael Schiller’s had a long road and he’s forgotten the meaning of several human words along the way. Commitment? Relationship? Love, for all the gods’ sakes? What does a vampire need those for? He’s completely content treating his long string of one-off lovers as midnight snacks. He makes it good for them and has no reason for guilt or grief. Some nights still induce an odd, hollow ache, but he can just drown it in the next conquest. Master of his universe, he lives without a care…until he encounters a bizarre creature feeding in an alley.

It’s caught his scent, and now that it’s hunting him, Rafael remembers a word from his childhood. Krsnik—the hunters, the monsters who feed on the blood of vampires. He could run, but he’d be running forever, and that would sure as hell take the fun out of life. Time to figure out what the creature really is, what can defeat it, and why he feels so drawn to it.

 The Line by Angel Martinez is another terrific story from this “auto read” fantasy author.   The Line takes the typical vampire character, normally an apex predator when they aren’t sparkling, and gives him an adversary, the Krsnik, worthy of such formidable being.  Furthermore, Martinez doesn’t just give us a remarkably scary hunter in the Krsnik, no, she gives us the haunting backstory as to how this creature came into being.  By giving us those extra layers, Martinez’ The Line and her characters steps outside the ordinary “supernatural” narrative into something quite wonderful and unexpected.

Talk about a duo meant for each other in every way but romantic.  At least at first.  Rafael, is a vampire whose years of existence has taught him that killing his “food’ is unnecessary. Instead he leaves his “young men” sexually sated and happy when he is done and on his way out the  door.  It’s a lonely existence but Rafael has made his peace with it.  Then a new predator appears in his town and Rafael decides to track it down and dispatch it.  Only this predator feeds on vampires and is more powerful and just as cunning as Rafael.  Now the hunter is the hunted, Rafael’s position at the top of the food chain is gone and his continued existence in doubt.  It’s a lovely turn of events and the author wrings every bit of angst, suspense and shock out of this element.

Lan the Krsnik is remarkable as the predator of predators.  He’s a truly fearsome creature.  But he is also as layered a being as Raphael. I won’t spoil the surprises that come with his character but they brought to mind a quote I recently read that said when creating villains/dark characters, a good way to make them real is to give them vulnerabilities, a way for the reader to also understand and sympathize with them*.  Angel Martinez has certainly done that here with Lan.  Together Lan and Rafael become this dance of hunter and hunted that I never wanted to end.  I loved every bit of it, including those instances where humor surfaces to ease the tension…for just a moment before it all gets deadly again.

I rarely find that I  am happy with the length of any Angel Martinez tale because she provides such  interesting back histories and world building to her stories that she often poses as many questions in her narrative as she supplies answers.  At the end of each story I am always left wanting to know more….about everything.  And yes, that happens here as well.  Forty five pages?  I could use two hundred and still be curious about small bits of history and back story that she teased us with throughout the tale.  The only jarring element was the inclusion of the Johnny Cash song, The Line.  I know it was included because this story was initially published as part of Totally Bound’s 50’s Mixed Tape Anthology but it could have been easily eliminated here, at  least to my way of thinking.

Do you love tales of the supernatural?  Are vampires in lust and love your thing as they are mine?  Or you are just a fan of Angel Martinez as I am…in all case, pick up The Line by Angel Martinez.  It’s a vampire tale you won’t want to miss and one I highly recommend.

*Can’t remember who made this remark at the moment.  I will give them credit when my memory starts working again.

Cover Art by Pamela Sinclair.  I have to say I am tired of seeing that one model everywhere.  You know, the blond one.  He’s an elf usually, or an angel.  No matter, what he’s emphatically noticed for is being overused.  Sigh.  Surely, there is another stock model who could be substituted in his place?

Sales Links:  Totally Bound Books      All Romance (ARe)       Amazon        Buy It Here

Book Details:

ebook, 45 pages
Published December 20th 2013 by Totally Bound
previously published as part of the 50’s Mixed Tape Anthology
ISBN 1781849145 (ISBN13: 9781781849149)
edition languageEnglish
urlhttps://www.totallybound.com

A Paul B Review: Unexpected Alpha by Amber Kell

Standard

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Unexpected Alpha Amber kell coverWhen Stanley Brown is attacked while jogging, his life would change forever. With the help of Fenris, Stan uncovers secrets which have been hidden from him for years.

Stanley Brown works as an accountant in the city. He goes jogging through the neighborhood park late one night following his usual route. He is viciously attacked by what appears to be a rabid dog. Suffering bite wounds and being clawed by the creature, Stan locates a fallen branch and impales the dog with it, killing the creature. Due to a loss of blood from the attack, Stan passes out.

When Stan awakens, he finds himself in a room surrounded by three people. They explain how one of them, Fenris, found him in the park and brought him back to their house. Stan finds Fen, as he asks to be called, intoxicating. When Fen’s sister comes near them, Stan declares that Fen is his. They go on to explain that he was attacked by a werewolf who happened to be their alpha. Having been mauled and changed into a werewolf himself, Stan is now the pack alpha.

A short time later, a man called the Overseer comes to the cabin. The Overseer is in charge of making sure rogue werewolves are dealt with properly. All are surprised when Stan sees the man and calls him Father. While pleased that his son has transformed, the Overseer is upset that Stan and Fen have formed a bond as he has promised Stan to another alpha Sebastian.
As the bond between Stan and Fen grows, they must meet the in-laws which causes commotion on all fronts. Add in a vengeful suitor who believes that the agreement with the Overseer should be honored no matter what and things turn into a life or death battle. Stan must rely on his instincts and guidance from Fen to survive so that they can run their pack.

I really enjoyed this short novel. While most of the usual shifter elements are there, the author puts a small twist on the story. She leads us to believe early on that Stan is actually transformed from human to werewolf but this is clarified later on in the book. I also appreciated the interactions of the in-laws during the family dinners. Stan’s mother, who is described as five foot nothing, seems to have control of his father, the Overseer. While Fen’s mother has two werewolf parents, she is unable to shift, which creates problems in her mating with Fen’s father.

Also terrific? The smart aleck character named Paul, who seems to push all the wrong buttons with his new alpha Stan but has Stan’s back when is it is needed.

The cover art by Meredith Russell is well done as most of Ms. Kell’s books are. The cover depicts Stan out jogging in the park with a wolf looking out in the background. The word “Alpha” is done as though claw marks might have been used to write it.

All profits from this book go to support the Autism Society of Washington (facebook page), in honor of Ms. Kell’s son. I highly recommend this story.

Note from Amber Kell: “All proceeds from Unexpected Alpha go to Autism Society of Washington (website). If you have a different autism charity you support if you donate a minimum of $5 and email me the receipt I’ll send you a free copy of Unexpected Alpha.”  Her email address is amberkellwrites@gmail.com

Sales Links:    All Romance (ARe)      Amazon          Buy It Here

Book Details:
Ebook, 63 pages
Published: April 12, 2015 by Smashwords
ISBN:  9781310378034
Edition: English

A Mika Review: Crossed Hearts (Hearts and Scars #1) by K. Vale

Standard

Rating: 3 stars out of 5:

 One heart’s been broken. The other is secondhand.

Young manKory Vansant doesn’t deserve to be alive.

As time sucks him dry of energy, sapping the final ounces of strength from his congenitally enlarged heart, he’s forced to end his career as Kory Kent, porn star. Staring down death, he questions his life choices and prays for a miracle. For another chance at life, he vows to change who he is at his core.

His prayers are answered. A perfect heart now beats in his chest, but it comes at a heavy price. The donor is an innocent young man cut down far too prematurely.

Kory’s blemished history and his donor’s spotless past are far from ideal matches.
As his debts skyrocket, Kory can’t help but think his resolve to walk the high road is being tested. After he meets the adorable Will Squire at the gravesite they both visit, he’s doubly damned because there’s no way he can keep up his end of the bargain. What happens when a man breaks a deal with a higher power?

Will often prefers the company of the dead to that of the living. Following a bad breakup, he pours himself into his two jobs—funeral director at his uncle’s mortuary and part-time paramedic. He’s drawn ever closer to Kory, as if fate sticks her fickle hand in and pushes them together like two unlikely puzzle pieces. But sometimes history can’t be buried, and maybe divine intervention isn’t always right. Will discovers everyone is imperfect, no matter how pretty the outer package, and opening one’s heart is never easy, but can be oh, so worth the pain.

I’m disappointed in this book. The blurb painted different picture to me. For the first half of the book it was all morose. The two mc’s in my opinion were better off as friends the way the first half went. I was tired of reading about death. I understand what both mc’s went through but, at least for me, there are only so many times that I want to read gloom and doom in my stories. There were too many of these moments in the story for my liking. I felt the entire first half of the story was lacking life or light.

However, I did like how Will and Kory started off doing small things for each other. Will became assertive with Kory, and I think that showed us that his confidence was growing.  Kory finally got over living a certain way because of the transplant and decided to live his life more fully. I liked Will’s ability to support Kory’s effort in whatever he wanted to do. He didn’t put him down, and was very patient with him.

But I think Kory needed a kick in the butt big time. He is rewarded with a second chance at life and it’s like he was waiting on something to happen for him instead of going out and getting what you wanted. As usual boy meets boy, boy doesn’t mention the “big lie”, and boy finds out, boy leaves, boys get back together.

Nothing spectacular about the story at all, but I did like certain areas. I got tired of Will’s self esteem issues. Will needed to own up to his role in that relationship. I don’t believe that Will had never seen that side of Darryl before. He’s almost homophobic, but remains in the closet, continuing to ruin other people’s life. I’m happy Will was able to walk away with the least possible scars. I’m happy he did find someone who appreciated him and loved him enough to be Out.

Kory did better as well. I don’t know if I think they should be together. Honestly I skimmed over the smexy scenes because they were predictable. *Sighs* I just wish I could have saw the chemistry in the beginning then maybe I’d believe it by the end, it kind of looks like they forced themselves to be together out of loneliness!

Cover Art by Kimber Vale. It’s a little crowded. I would have preferred just the two guys on the cover. It’s nice at the top, but then we look down and the rainbow umbrella with the cemetery just looks out of place.

Sales Links:                  Amazon          Buy It Here

Book Details:

ebook
Expected publication: April 27th 2015 by Kimber Vale (first published 2015)
original titleCrossed Hearts
edition languageEnglish
seriesHearts and Scars #1

Book Blast: How It Was Supposed To Be by Jayson James (excerpt and giveaway)

Standard

Banner300x250

How It Was Supposed to Be by Jayson James

Release Date: April 10, 2015

Concept 2
About How It Was Supposed To Be

The Kennicott’s were living the carefree life of an upper middle class family. That was until one day when his father arrives home from work and shares the company he has worked for since he was Reese’s age has gone out of business. Adding to the stress of being out of work for the worst time is the worst economic downturn the United States has ever faced. It does not take long for the Kennicotts to fall behind in their bills and lose everything.

Reese Kennicott had everything he could ever want and life was good. He worked a part time job to have extra money and to socialize. Now he is working all the hours he can get in order to help his family get by, which isn’t much. Reese is now dating the guy of his dreams, he along with his friends seem to be the only stable thing going for him.

Hope finally comes with a new job that will take the family across the country. This means for Reese giving up his lifelong friends, his new boyfriend and life as he’s always known it. The family takes with them what they can and begins on a road trip to their new life. Along the way, they encounter several barriers and hope begins to fade. Each day things look bleaker and the Kennicott’s begin to wonder if they are going to make it to their destination.
Pages or Words: 192 pages

Categories: Gay fiction, M/M Romance, New Adult, Homeless

Excerpt:

A few days later Cruz caught Reese on his way out to the parking lot after school. He appeared so smug and at the same time seemed so debonair as he approached Reese. When he was close enough, he looked around, perhaps to make sure there was no one in ear shot. There was no greeting from Cruz before he asked, “Relationship troubles?”

He responded, “You mean Morgan?” Cruz nodded his head as if telling him duh. “We’re only friends.”

“Oh.” Cruz shrugged, “So he’s not gay then?”

“No he’s not gay.” Reese did not feel it was his place to share Morgan’s bisexuality.

Cruz stared at him, only perpetuating Reese’s discomfort. “You’re gay though?”

“Yes. You’re gay too?” He figured fair was fair.

Nodding in agreement, Cruz asked, “Do you have a boyfriend?”

“No.” Reese was feeling as if he was being sized up added, “I hear you don’t either.” Cruz was silent, glancing away and yawning, appearing disinterested in the conversation. Reese decided that he’d better make his move, “You want to go out sometime?”

Cruz turned toward him and seemed to be thinking over his response. Reese smiled feeling hopeful and then concerned he might be coming off as desperate. Cruz nodded, “That would be fine by me.” Then he turned to walk away without saying another word.

Goodreads Link  
Publisher: Jayson James Books
Cover Artist: Jayson James
Sales Links:  Smashwords      Amazon

About  author Jayson James –

I have a horrible time when it comes to writing about myself.  It is not that I have low self-esteem, but the fact that I am not comfortable talking about myself.

For most of my life, I have been writing and sharing it with my friends.  They have repeatedly told me I needed to publish my writing and share it with the world. Now that I have, I am amazed at how many people admire it.

My interests beyond writing include reading a variety of books, watching movies and drawing.

I truly appreciate all the support and encouragement from my friends, family, and you. I am so thankful to your support!

Keep on reading! I am always interested in hearing about what people are reading, especially if it is something I have written.
Thank you for reading and letting me know what you think of my writing!

Where to find the author:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jaysonjamesbooks
Facebook Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorJaysonJames
Twitter: https://twitter.com/jaysonjamesbook
Website: http://jaysonjamesbooks.blogspot.com/

Contest

Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: E-copy of ‘How It Was Supposed to Be’ by Jayson James. Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. Link and prizes provided by the author and Pride Promotions.

Rafflecopter Code:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

BannerTemplate


Tour Dates & Stops: April 30, 2015

Parker Williams, Boys on the Brink Reviews, Carly’s Book Reviews, MM Good Book Reviews, Bayou Book Junkie, Bike Book Reviews, Elisa – My Reviews and Ramblings, BFD Book Blog, Molly Lolly, Inked Rainbow Reads, Divine Magazine, My Fiction Nook, Rainbow Gold Reviews, Andrew Q. Gordon, Mikky’s World of Books, Amanda C. Stone, Hearts on Fire, Multitasking Mommas, Velvet Panic, Wake Up Your Wild Side, Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews, Dawn’s Reading Nook, Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, The Hat Party

In the Spotlight: Crossed Hearts (Hearts and Scars #1) by K. Vale (guest post and contest)

Standard

STRW In The Spotlight Header

Book Name: Crossed Hearts (Hearts and Scars #1) by K. Vale

Young man

Goodreads Link
Publisher: Kimber Vale
Cover Artist: Dana Priebe
Release Date: April 27, 2015

K. Vale on Contemporary Villains (and their Fantasy Counterparts)

Guest post by Kimber Vale
Sometimes I feel like plotting a sci-fi/paranormal/fantasy book is a bit easier than a contemporary when it comes to the special effects and bad guy department. What do we contemporary authors have to work with? Real life. Blah. Real bad guys who can often come across as caricatures if you bend them too hard. We don’t get to use super villains whose only motivation is to possess the one ring to rule them all. We don’t get to have our MCs sprout wings and spit fire just when they’re about to become mincemeat because some ancient prophecy foretold they would save the world (and their love interest).
In short (who am I kidding? I don’t do short), we have to work hard to balance the good vs. bad like tightrope walkers. It has to be believable bad and believable heroics. After all, it’s real life (okay, the fiction version, but still).
Don’t get me wrong, fantastical villains still need to have good reason for being the way they are. Sometimes their reasons are the same as those of the contemporary villains: daddy never tossed the ball with them, money, power, unrequited love, a sex tape leaked that ruined their high-school career, they have a thorn festering somewhere they can’t reach, etc.
But fantasy authors get the opportunity to branch out in the villainous causation realm in ways contemporary authors don’t.
Here are some samples of fantasy villains and their reasons for being bad boys and girls so you can see how such ambition clearly wouldn’t work in a contemporary story:
Jean Grey (The Dark Phoenix of X-Men): Corrupted by her immense telekinetic power—enough so she kills the man she loves, and then some.
Alexis Machine (Thad Beaumont’s dark half in Stephen King’s The Dark Half): A fictional reincarnation of Thad’s absorbed twin who served as Thad’s pen name for years, writing racy, gory schlock that sold like hotcakes. When Thad decided to “kill him off” to write more serious literature, the pen name came to life and starting slicing and dicing.
Lord Farquaad (Shrek): He hates fantasy beings. That’s his reason. Also, he’s short.
The White Witch (The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe): She wanted to continue to rule Narnia, and ensure it remained winter always, minus Christmas.
The Kurgan (Highlander): This movie never made sense to me. There can be only one? Says who? There are a number of (inexplicably) immortal dudes running around throughout the film. What? The world isn’t big enough to share? Update: My husband says the “one” becomes an all-knowing mind reader. Okay, then.
Lord Voldemort (Harry Potter): Voldemort is lucky he wasn’t set with the Kurgan. He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named basically wanted to live forever. Yes, he wanted to be large and in charge, too, but that was secondary to eternal life.
So you see, contemporary bad guys have to play within the constraints of real world rules. My villain in Crossed Hearts is mostly incensed by jealousy. Possibly horniness. That’s it. I suppose he’s a natural born dickhead as well, but then again, so was Voldemort. 😉
Thanks so much for hosting me!

STRW Author BookSynopsis

One heart’s been broken. The other is secondhand.

Kory Vansant doesn’t deserve to be alive.

As time sucks him dry of energy, sapping the final ounces of strength from his congenitally enlarged heart, he’s forced to end his career as Kory Kent, porn star. Staring down death, he questions his life choices and prays for a miracle. For another chance at life, he vows to change who he is at his core.

His prayers are answered. A perfect heart now beats in his chest, but it comes at a heavy price. The donor is an innocent young man cut down far too prematurely.

Kory’s blemished history and his donor’s spotless past are far from ideal matches.

As his debts skyrocket, Kory can’t help but think his resolve to walk the high road is being tested. After he meets the adorable Will Squire at the gravesite they both visit, he’s doubly damned because there’s no way he can keep up his end of the bargain.

What happens when a man breaks a deal with a higher power?

Will often prefers the company of the dead to that of the living. Following a bad breakup, he pours himself into his two jobs—funeral director at his uncle’s mortuary and part-time paramedic. He’s drawn ever closer to Kory, as if fate sticks her fickle hand in and pushes them together like two unlikely puzzle pieces. But sometimes history can’t be buried, and maybe divine intervention isn’t always right. Will discovers everyone is imperfect, no matter how pretty the outer package, and opening one’s heart is never easy, but can be oh, so worth the pain.

Pages or Words: 70,000 words

Sales Links:

Categories: Contemporary, Fiction, Gay Fiction, M/M Romance, Romance

STRW Spotlight Book Excerpt

The man scratched the scrub on his chin. “Heart recipient,” he said finally. “I’m Kory—umm…Kory Vansant.” Holding out his hand, he took another step. Will’s fingers were swallowed in warm skin and bone.

“Will Squire.” Again, he couldn’t tear his gaze from the tease of scar tissue jutting from the crotch of Kory’s shirt collar. The urge to reach out and trace a finger over the pink relief of healed tissue was strong. Just like I touched Brandon’s incision. The stark difference between the two—one wound marking the end of a life and the other a salvation—was surreal. Will was nothing but an outsider looking in on a miracle, but somehow he felt he’d come around full circle.

“Want me to get naked so you can see the whole thing?”

Will closed his eyes for a moment and then looked up, his face flaming with a mix of embarrassment and immediate, fierce arousal. “I’m sorry. Totally rude.”

Kory smiled good-naturedly. “No worries. It’s a way to reclaim who I am, or was. Or some crap. I’m not just my medical status, like they keep saying at my support group.”

“No. Of course you’re not.”

He laughed loud and deep, and the warmth in Will’s face drifted down his body. “I’ve adopted it as my little icebreaker whenever people stare,” Kory said.

“Well, ice broken.” Will gulped. Hell, ice melted into a rolling boil.

KVRC

 

STRW Author Bio and Contacts

K. Vale writes erotic romance of all stripes, from hot hetero to mouthwatering manlove. Find her MF work published under Kimber Vale. Come for the sex. Stay for the story. Stalk Kimber on Facebook and Twitter @KimberVale, and check her site for updates, new releases, and freebies at http://www.authorkimbervale.com.

Where to find the author:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kimber.vale
Facebook Author Page 
Twitter: https://twitter.com/KimberVale
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/kimbervale/

STRW Spotlight Contest Header

Contest:  Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: $20 Amazon Gift Card. Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. Link and prizes provided by the author and Pride Promotions.
Rafflecopter Code:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 KVBannerTemplate

Tour Dates & Stops: April 27 – May 8, 2015

27-Apr

Prism Book Alliance

The Novel Approach

28-Apr

Bike Book Reviews

Rainbow Gold Reviews

Wake Up Your Wild Side

Amanda C. Stone

29-Apr

Decadent Delights

Inked Rainbow Reads

30-Apr

Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words

Divine Magazine

1-May

Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews

Molly Lolly

4-May

Bayou Book Junkie

5-May

Cate Ashwood

6-May

TTC Books and More

Love Bytes

7-May

MM Good Book Reviews

BFD Book Blog

8-May

My Fiction Nook

Sinfully Addicted to All Male Romance

Barb, A Zany Old Lady Review – Lost Along the Way (Tales of the Curious Cookbook) by Marie Sexton

Standard

Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

Lost Along the Way coverThe fourth in the Cookbook Series, each written by a different author, Marie Sexton brings us an amazing story in Lost Along the Way. It’s complex, heart-breaking, heart-warming, full of angst and simmering sexual tension, then topped with a sweet layer of love.

When Denver meteorologist, Daniel Whitaker, receives word that his parents have been killed in a car crash, his heart is broken. And it’s not only because they are dead—it’s because he’s been estranged from them for fifteen years and had only recently begun speaking to them again. Now his planned trip to his hometown of Laramie, Wyoming won’t be bringing the joy, healing, and peace he had thought it would. His parents rejected him when he told them he was gay and that he planned to spend his life with his soulmate, Chris. Though they aren’t legally married, he and Chris are still together, and Daniel thinks of him as his husband.

Three months later, Daniel finally makes his way to his parent’s home to begin the process of cleaning up and selling their house. He hadn’t needed to go there when they passed since they had made arrangements to be buried in their hometown of Omaha, Nebraska, and their neighbor, Landon Kushner, offered to take care of the house until Daniel could get there.

Landon is as far from Daniel’s imagination as he can get. Based on how beautifully he kept up the property, and the fact that he went through the kitchen and got rid of the perishables, Daniel pictures a neat and tidy middle-aged man. The reality is that Landon is gruff, built, sloppy, but sexy, with a beard that is far past neat and bordering on scruffy. But he has a heart of gold and offers to help Daniel sort and clean out the house. Daniel takes him up on the offer in exchange for giving Landon many of the knickknacks from the overly cluttered house. Each weekend they work together and Daniel sees more and more that Landon is all about joy and freedom. His wind sculptures—huge monstrosities of scrap metal are not ugly like Daniel first thought—they’re beautiful, wild creations that capture the spirit of both the land and the man who created them.

When “Recipes for the Heart: Mystical Meals and Dangerous Desserts” by Granny B. is delivered to Daniel’s address with Landon’s name on it, the real fun begins.

Daniel has been realizing more and more that he is happier on the weekends with Landon than he is on the weekdays at his job and with Chris. Chris has been cold and distant for months and turns down every opportunity to go to Laramie with Daniel. He also works evenings and weekends—when he is working and not losing another job. They have no sex life either, so as the stress of traveling back and forth and getting no support from Chris starts to wear on Daniel, he begins to wonder if they should stay together or break up. Then one morning after going for a jog, Daniel discovers that Landon has made bread from the Granny B cookbook and the sexual tension heats up. Each recipe in the cookbook solves a problem, or brings out an emotion, and apparently this particular bread brings on the sexual tension, so much so, that Daniel escapes quickly and goes home to shower. In the shower, he’s seized with images of Landon taking a shower at the same time across the street at his home. Though it’s in his imagination, the sex that follows feels very real, and it shows him that he really needs to do something about Chris.

What happens, and what Daniel finds out when he decides to make the meatloaf that is “for finding what was lost along the way”, shocks Daniel and turns his world upside down.

I really liked this story. I’ve always loved a slow burn/ust story and this one definitely has that and more. Plus, the characters are so well-described and their personalities so well-developed, that I felt like I knew them. To me, this is the best of the series to date. As I stated at the beginning of this review, it was romance at its best. This one is a beautiful love story of not only one man for another, but of family—both family of origin and family of the heart—and it’s one of those stories where the HEA is so worth the wait! Don’t hesitate to buy this book.

Cover Art by Reese Dante depicts a loaf of bread in front of an open cookbook. Since that bread features prominently in a very interesting scene in this story, the cover is perfect for this book and ties it to others in the series.

Sales Links:    Dreamspinner Press       All Romance (ARe)     Amazon        Buy It Here

Book Details:

ebook, 128 pages
Published April 15th 2015 by Dreamspinner Press
original titleLost Along the Way
ISBN139781632168580
edition languageEnglish
seriesTales of the Curious Cookbook

Tales of the Curious Cookbook series:

6 works, 5 primary works.
Five fun and fanciful stories about a rather curious cookbook!

Authors and Their Stories:

RJ Scott – For a Rainy Afternoon (Tales of the Curious Cookbook) by R.J. Scott
Amy Lane – Food for Thought (Tales of the Curious Cookbook) by Amy Lane
Marie Sexton – Lost Along the Way (Tales of the Curious Cookbook) by Marie Sexton
Amber Kell – Cookies for Courting (Tales of the Curious Cookbook) by Amber Kell
Mary Calmes – Just Desserts (Tales of the Curious Cookbook) by Mary Calmes
RJ Scott – Tales of the Curious Cookbook by R.J. Scott

In The Book Spotlight: The Biker’s Omega by Lisa Oliver (excerpt and giveaway)

Standard

Cover copy

 The Biker’s Omega by Lisa Oliver

Release Date: December, 2014

STRW In The Spotlight Header

Goodreads Link
Publisher: Oliver Group Publications
Cover Artist: Lisa Oliver

Sales Links:  Amazon – All Romance (ARe) – Smashwords

Banner300x250

STRW Author BookSynopsis

Marly Miles has been happy in his life as a lone Omega wolf, living and working among the humans of Orlando, Florida. When an attack on him and his friend brings Marly to the notice of the Sergeant of Arms of the Epitaph’s Motorcycle Club, he realizes immediately that the man carries the same scent as his attackers. Not a very good start when the same man is also his mate.

Alpha wolf, Trent Beaumont has spent a lot of years living as a human when he walked away from his home pack. Forced to live as a straight man, because of the Epitaph’s club culture, he walks away from Marly after checking the man is safe. But no wolf, not even an Alpha, can refuse the mating call from the Fates. But with his President looking over his shoulder, and a woman panting after him to share his bed, Trent isn’t sure it will ever be the right time to claim his own Omega.

Fights, misunderstandings and a lack of communication aren’t the only problems Trent and Marly face. Trent has a history that has clouded his judgment and when Marly gets attacked again, Trent realizes he could lose his mate permanently, if he doesn’t get his head out of the sand.

Warning: Contains one hot biker, a beautiful twink with a sassy mouth, and a ton of misunderstandings. Graphic m/m sex, violence and strong language.
Pages or Words: 130 pages

Categories: Erotica, Gay Fiction, M/M Romance, Paranormal, Romance

STRW Spotlight Book Excerpt

Trent had been waiting hours, freaking hours, for his mate to get home. He had pulled into the apartment block about an hour after he left the club, figuring a shower and a change of clothes was a good idea. But from the scent in the hallway outside of Marly’s apartment door, it seemed he had just missed the little man. Oh, well. Maybe his mate had gone out for food. Four hours later, Trent had to leave his post to get his own food and to take a bathroom break. But in less than thirty minutes, he was back at his post, waiting for Marly to get home. He didn’t remember falling asleep, but being awoken by a mini biker vision in black was more than Trent’s control could handle, especially when Marly smelled of so many different men. The little shit had been clubbing and while Trent wasn’t silly enough to think that Marly had been with anyone else, his wolf’s need to cover the man with his own scent was overwhelming.

Yes, he meant to talk to Marly first – get to know a little bit about the man he was about to become bonded to. Trent wasn’t some crass shifter who fucked first, and then talked after. Not with his mate at least. With most men he had enjoyed in the past it was fuck first and then fuck the talking. But Trent wanted to explain to Marly about his position in the club and what was happening there. He needed to find out about Marly’s pack status and explain his own lack of one. But then the sexy man just had to put a wiggle in his step as he walked passed him and that one little movement shattered what was left of Trent’s resolve, already weakened by his long wait. It had been so long since he had enjoyed a man in his arms, and this one was already deemed perfect for him by the Fates. He didn’t have the strength to argue with that sort of situation.

And right now? With Marly’s mouth open under his, Trent couldn’t think of one goddamn fucking reason why he had wanted to wait at all. The hint of pineapple and cream suggested his mate liked those frou-frou drinks that Trent had never tasted because they looked too girly. The lack of anyone else’s scent on Marly’s tongue meant the man had behaved himself while he was out, and Trent made sure to check, thoroughly, in every crevice and corner of Marly’s mouth.

It wasn’t only Marly’s mouth that was driving Trent insane. Marly’s slim but solid chest was rammed tight between his own and the wall, not a cigarette paper gap between them. Trent moaned as he felt Marly’s cock throbbing behind his jeans, against his own abs, and his Omega’s fingers gripping his shoulders was pure heaven. There was nothing hesitant about Marly – not the way he opened his mouth to accept Trent’s tongue, nor the way he clasped Trent’s shoulders as though the bigger man would try and get away. When Trent felt Marly wrap his lean legs around his waist, opening out that delectable denim covered ass, Trent couldn’t help running his fingers along the seam covered crack. Marly’s full body shiver and the way he pressed even closer into Trent’s chest was proof his mate was as eager for their mating as he was.

 

STRW Author Bio and Contacts

Lisa Oliver had been writing non-fiction books for years when visions of half dressed, buff men started invading her dreams. Unable to resist the lure of her stories, Lisa decided to switch to fiction books, and now stories about her men clamor to get out from under her fingertips.

When Lisa is not writing, she is usually reading with a cup of tea always at hand. Her grown children and grandchildren sometimes try and pry her away from the computer and have found that the best way to do it, is to promise her chocolate. Lisa will do anything for chocolate.

Lisa loves to hear from her readers and other writers. You can friend her on Facebook here, or email her directly at yoursintuitively@gmail.com.

Where to find the author:

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/lisaoliverauthor
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/wisecrone333
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/lisaoliver79
Other: http://www.supernaturalsmut.com

STRW Spotlight Contest Header

Contest:  Must be 18 years of age or older to enter.  Link and prizes provided by the author and Pride Promotions. Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: E-copy of ‘The Biker’s Omega’ by Lisa Oliver.

Rafflecopter Code:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

BannerTemplate

Tour Dates & Stops:

20-Apr

Parker Williams

21-Apr

Bike Book Reviews

Inked Rainbow Reads

22-Apr

Carly’s Book Reviews

23-Apr

Velvet Panic

Amanda C. Stone

24-Apr

BFD Book Blog

27-Apr

MM Good Book Reviews

28-Apr

Multitasking Mommas

Bayou Book Junkie

29-Apr

Cate Ashwood

Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words

30-Apr

Prism Book Alliance

1-May

Molly Lolly

3 Chicks After Dark

Love Bytes

Book Spotlight: Justice Prevails( Sin City Uniforms #3) by Morticia Knight (excerpt and giveaway)

Standard

 justiceprevails_800

Justice Prevails( Sin City Uniforms #3) by Morticia Knight
Goodreads Link

STRW In The Spotlight Header

Release Date: April 6, 2015

Publisher: Totally Bound
Cover Artist: Posh Gosh

Sales Links: Totally Bound Books

STRW Author BookSynopsis

Never judge a sexy man by his cover.

Detective Beau Williams is hard-working, dedicated, and professional. He enjoys the finer things in life, but with his heavy caseload that includes what Beau suspects is a new serial killer, he has no time to enjoy much of anything. What the tall redhead needs is someone to shake him up a little.

Investigative Technician Austin Kent never met a snarky joke he didn’t like – or a set of stairs that couldn’t trip him up. One night after a devastating episode at work, Austin sees something else he likes – the handsome detective he’s seen around the station whom he’s always wondered about. But after he makes a drunken fool of himself in front of Detective Williams, he’s sure there’s no hope.

Beau and Austin’s worlds collide right away when Austin is sent to pick up some evidence at the station. Amidst a myriad of twists and turns in the troubling serial killer style murders of Vegas conventioneers, Austin and Beau discover that there’s more to the other than they’d originally thought. There might even be more they’d like to give – unless the killer has the final say.

Pages or Words: 50,662 words

Categories: Contemporary, M/M Romance, Men In Uniform, Mystery, Thriller

RC

STRW Spotlight Book Excerpt

Exclusive Excerpt NSFW – see note

Beau nibbled at the side of his neck, Austin tilting his head to give Beau better access. His taste was already familiar, his scent alluring.

“It’s nice to see your car next to mine.” To continue reading, see below…

Click Here to Read ( by clicking you agree that you are 18 years of age or older)

 

 

STRW Author Bio and Contacts

M/M Erotic Romance author Morticia Knight enjoys hot stories of men loving men forever after. They can be men in uniform, Doms and subs, rock stars or bikers – but they’re all searching for the one (or two!) who was meant only for them.

When not indulging in her passion for books, she loves the outdoors, film and music. Once upon a time she was the singer in an indie rock band that toured the West Coast and charted on U.S. college radio. She is currently working on more installments of Sin City Uniforms and The Hampton Road Club, as well as the follow-up to Bryan and Aubrey’s story from Rockin’ the Alternative.

Where to find the author:

Follow on Twitter: @morticiaknight
Add book on ‘to read’ shelf at Goodreads
Like Facebook Author page: https://www.facebook.com/authormorticiaknight?fref=nf
Follow Morticia Knight’s blog: http://www.morticiaknight.com/

STRW Spotlight Contest Header

Contest:  Enter to win a Rafflecopter Prize: $25 Amazon Gift Card and Signed paperback copy of Justice Prevails. Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. Link and Prizes provided by the author and Pride Promotions.

Rafflecopter Code:
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Tour Dates & Stop

6-Apr

Wicked Faerie’s Tales and Reviews

7-Apr

TTC Books and More

8-Apr

Amanda C. Stone

9-Apr

Kimber Vale

10-Apr

Joyfully Jay

13-Apr

Cate Ashwood

14-Apr

Prism Book Alliance

15-Apr

Fangirl Moments and My Two Cents

16-Apr

Parker Williams

17-Apr

Divine Magazine

20-Apr

Decadent Delights

21-Apr

BFD Book Blog

22-Apr

Rainbow Gold Reviews

Velvet Panic

23-Apr

Bayou Book Junkie

24-Apr

Carly’s Book Reviews

27-Apr

Love Bytes

28-Apr

The Novel Approach

29-Apr

Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words

30-Apr

Molly Lolly

MM Good Book Reviews

1-May

Iyana Jenna

Elisa – My Reviews and Ramblings

In the Spotlight: Dreams of the Forgotten (Sumeria’s Sons #3) by Lexi Ander (excerpt and giveaway)

Standard

Print

Dreams of the Forgotten (Sumeria’s Sons #3) by Lexi Ander

To be Read as Part of a Series
Release Date: March 15, 2015

STRW In The Spotlight Header

Goodreads Link
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Cover Artist: London Burden

Sales Links:  Less Than Three Press

LARC

STRW Author BookSynopsis

For Tristan and Ushna, nothing comes easy and with each passing day the challenges grow and the dangers multiply. The safe home they are building for their family and tribe is threatened from all sides, and the peace they seek is being torn apart by enemies and internal strife. Tristan dares not reveal his condition to any but those closest to him, all the while he’s plagued by dreams he cannot remember upon waking…

And over all of it hangs the knowledge that his time with Ushna is running out. Because Ushna already has a Flame awaiting rebirth, and though Tristan would die to protect that bond, he constantly struggles against his beast who demands they bind Ushna to their side.

Pages or Words: 63,000

Categories: Fantasy, Gay, Paranormal, Polyamory, Urban Fantasy

STRW Spotlight Book Excerpt

Ushna’s Lupe, the third form of half-man and half-wolf that all Lycan warriors used for battle, pushed forward as his need to protect took over. Short, fine, black hair burst through his skin under my hands as his chest and arms thickened, his face elongated, and his mouth filled with jagged teeth. Even with fingers tipped with razor-sharp claws, he was careful as he delicately held me in his protective arms. He growled loud and long in warning.

The light switched on, flooding the room with blinding white light. I heard Gregori in the background yelling in anger, followed by a hollow thumping noise, and wounded yells. I scented who’d invaded our bedroom before I gazed over Ushna’s shoulder.

Several weeks ago, Elder Koller had made a call to pull childhood friends of ours, Stanley Kendall and Jory Swaine, from California. The suggestion had been made after the Magi Triad had tried to kidnap both Gregori and Ushna, and the elder knew these two were men I trusted. We had been expecting them at any time, and I would’ve laughed at their antics if I wasn’t worried Ushna would eviscerate our friends.

Gregori, his red hair wild, clad only in blue sleep pants, had a fistful of Stan’s dark hair and a foot planted in the middle of his back, bowing Stan over backward. Gregori wielded a shoe like it was a Sumerian sword and beat Jory with it. Jory tried to defend himself against the onslaught of the shoe and fight off the two guards who were attempting to subdue him.

“You stupid idiots!” Gregori yelled at the top of his lungs. “You could’ve hurt him, you oversized oafs! What’s wrong with knocking?!”

Thwack. Thwack. Thwack.

“Ushna is going to eat you and I should let him! It would remind you to respect your alpha!”

Thwack. Thwack. Thwack.

“Senseless overgrown children!”

Half a dozen guards filed into the room, taking charge of Stan and Jory, relieving a bedraggled Gregori. Scowling furiously at our friends, Gregori gradually crawled onto the bed, talking soothingly to Ushna, who hadn’t stopped growling. I ran my hands down his fur-covered back to soothe him.

“Everything is okay, Ushna,” Gregori cooed.

I cupped my hands around his face, gazing into his ruby red eyes. “I’m okay,” I whispered to him. “Come back to me.”

He released the Lupe, and Ushna the man emerged, the harsh and horrific features melting away. His body shuddered, muscles clenched and convulsed as his control returned.

It’d been years since I’d seen our two friends. Where Stan was dark, Jory was light. Stanley Kendall had wavy dark brown hair that roughly covered his brow, but didn’t quite touch his collar. His eyes were so brown they were virtually black. He sported a couple days of growth on his chin and cheeks. The stubble looked good against his bronzed skin.

Jory Swaine, on the other hand, had short blond hair, was clean shaven with bright turquoise eyes and golden skin. Stan was broader through the chest with his athletic build while Jory was leaner. Both wore leathers; Jory’s pants where loose, hanging low on his hips and revealing the waistband of his boxers, while Stan looked like he was poured into his.

Ushna turned a furious gaze on Stan and Jory, who were standing in the farthest corner, appearing chastised and contrite. “What in the hell were you thinking!” He roared at them. Gregori and I made shushing noises, but Ushna continued to rumble.

“Ah… surprise?” Stan offered weakly, slightly confused.

“Ushna, it’s okay; they didn’t know,” I said.

Ushna snapped his human teeth at our friends. I swear if we’d been alone, I would’ve jumped and taken him right there.

“Xenres, are you injured?” Corey Bahar was the first to swear a blood oath to me. He’d been Captain until this unexpected growth of the tribe and now he was the newly appointed Arms Master of the Royal Guard. In private, he was most adamant in the use of my title, Xenres, which meant prince in our language. Corey didn’t take his sable gaze off Stan and Jory as he approached me. The man looked like he’d been up for hours with his braided blond hair gleaming, clothes pressed and tucked. Did he ever sleep?

Jory chortled at Corey’s words, which caused Gregori to throw a shoe and bean Jory in the head.

A string of curse words exploded from Jory. “Dammit, Gregori! What the hell was that for?” He rubbed the sore spot.

Gregori didn’t answer. Corey’s question was all it took to make Ushna start snarling again as he ran his hands over me, checking for obvious injury. Gregori rubbed small circles on Ushna’s back. I grabbed his hands and craned my head around to get him to look me in the eye, to see me.

“Hey, hey! I’m okay. I’m not hurt.” I kissed his hands.

“I want Nathan to look at you.” Ushna’s worried gaze continued to study me. Nathan Janick, my brother and the resident doctor, had meticulously cared for me during my pregnancy so far.

“All right.” I knew nothing less would appease him.

Stan watched our exchange. The longer he listened, the more confused he appeared. “What’s the big deal?” He crossed his arms, scowling hard. He and Jory had acted as they normally would around us, with carefree roughhousing.

I grabbed Ushna’s attention before he could bark back a reply. We’d purposely kept my pregnancy within my inner circle. I hadn’t left the Clearwater area, which was my territory. When I needed to go to town, I wore a ring Gregori had made for me, a ring of illusion that had hid my swollen stomach. I didn’t meet with outsiders without it.

We hadn’t told Stan and Jory. All communication had gone through Elder Janus Koller, who’d recruited them to work for the Elder Council in the Enforcement Division. Neither Ushna nor I had spoken to these two before now. Needless to say, we hadn’t anticipated their surprise.

“Master Corey,” I calmly said, “we’re all right. I’m sorry we woke you.” I needed privacy for the talk we were going to have with our old friends.

Corey gave a slight bow. The expression on his face let me know we would be revisiting the issue of posting guards outside the bedroom. I had been successful at convincing Corey that the small group of warriors staying in the house was enough security. We didn’t need someone standing on sentry duty in the hallway. To appease Corey, I had even agreed to allow an armed detail to shadow me around the ranch when I left the house. This stunt of Stan’s and Jory’s would make Cory feel vindicated in his original assessment. I would have to talk quick at the next security meeting to keep the arrangements the way they were now.

“It was no bother, Xenres.” Corey shot Jory a hard look when my friend snorted a laugh. He appeared to be gauging whether Jory was being disrespectful to me or making fun of him. “I won’t be far if you need me,” he said before closing the door behind him.

Jory tried to hide his smirk by rubbing a hand over his face. I knew what was coming before he opened his mouth. “Damn, Tristan. You’ve got people bowing and scraping to you. What’ve you been doing?”

STRW Author Bio and Contacts
Lexi has always been an avid reader, and at a young age started reading (secretly) her mother’s romances (the ones she was told not to touch). She was the only teenager she knew of who would be grounded from reading. Later, with a pencil and a note book, she wrote her own stories and shared them with friends because she loved to see their reactions. A Texas transplant, Lexi now kicks her boots up in the Midwest with her Yankee husband and her eighty-pound puppies named after vacuum cleaners.

Lexi Ander Bio

Where to find the author:

Web site: http://www.lexiander.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lexi.ander.9
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/LexiAnder1
Blog: http://lexiander.blogspot.com/
E-mail: lexi.ander.author@gmail.com

STRW Spotlight Contest Header:

Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. Link and Prizes provided by the author and Pride Promotions. Enter to win a RAFFLECOPTER PRIZES:
• $20 Amazon Gift card, $20 All Romance Gift card, hard copy of Dreams of the Forgotten, swag (pens, bookmarks, and such)
• $20 All Romance Gift card, hard copy of Dreams of the Forgotten, swag (pens, bookmarks, and such)
• hard copy of Dreams of the Forgotten, swag (pens, bookmarks)
• e-book copy of Dreams of the Forgotten
• e-book copy of Dreams of the Forgotten

Rafflecopter Code:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

LABannerTemplate

Tour Dates & Stops:

27-Apr

Joyfully Jay

Emotion in Motion

28-Apr

Prism Book Alliance

Hearts on Fire

29-Apr

Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words

Love Bytes

Vampires, Werewolves, and Fairies, Oh My

30-Apr

The Novel Approach

Decadent Delights

1-May

BFD Book Blog

Divine Magazine

4-May

Molly Lolly

MM Good Book Reviews

5-May

My Fiction Nook

Book Reviews, Rants, and Raves

6-May

Inked Rainbow Reads

Chris McHart

7-May

Amanda C. Stone

Cate Ashwood

8-May

Boy Meets Boy Reviews

Rainbow Gold Reviews

Our Best Book Covers of April 2015

Standard

Dreams Dreams of Fire and Gods

So many wonderful covers to choose from this month.  Covers that pulled you into and made you want to read the story inside. Covers that intrigued, drew you in or were just plain adorable.  We all have our favorites…what were yours this month?  Write and let us know!

              Scattered Thoughts and Rogue Words

Best Covers of April 2015

crossed olive branches

In no particular order…

ToTouchTheSkyBurn The Sky coverFire- Dreams of Fire and Gods coverSpiretown cover

 

 

 

 

  • To Touch The Sky (Leap of Faith #2) by M.A. Church, cover art by LC Chase
  • Burn the Sky by Jaye McKenna. cover art by Chinchbug
  • Fire (Dreams of Fire and Gods #2) by James Erich, cover art by Paul Richmond (in fact all the covers in this series
  • Spiretown by Lia Black, cover design by the author

Fallout coverA Beginner's Guide to Wooing Your Mate coverSlasherazzi coverLost Along the Way cover

 

 

 

 

 

  • Fallout by Lisa Henry and M. Caspian,  cover art by Natasha Snow
  • A Beginner’s Guide to Wooing Your Mate (Being(s) in Love #3) by R. Cooper, cover art by Paul Richmond
  • Slasherazzi by Daniel A. Kaine, cover art by Wilde City Press art director
  • A Way Home by Keira Andrews, cover art?

 

SMCate-Ashwood-Thirty-Things-coverFood for Thought coverHoarfrost coverFamily of Lies cover

 

 

 

 

  • Thirty Things by Cate Ashwood, Cover art by Alexandria Corza
  • Food for Thought by Amy Lane (Tales of the Curious Cookbook), cover art by Reese Dante
  • Hoarfrost by Jordan L. Hawk, cover art by Jordan L. Hawk
  • Family of Lies: Sebastian by Sam Argent, cover art by Anne Cain

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000038_00067]